The Wolverine

April 2013

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Wolverine WATCH   john borton J U-M Hoops Making Strides ohn Beilein's crew headed for The Palace somewhat less than regally adorned. A centimeter's worth of wobble by round basketball on rounded rim careened a Big Ten championship into a tie for fourth in the conference. A No. 1 or 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament that appeared so imminent at one point tumbled to a No. 4, the Wolverines dropping five of their final 10 regular-season games. They bowed out of the Big Ten Tournament in a firestorm of Wisconsin offense, a dynamic as incongruous as latter-years Elvis as a celery spokesman. They entered The Big Dance with big question marks — about their defense, the consistency of their young players and their readiness for the biggest stage in college basketball. The Wolverines don't care. They're not listening. They're ready to turn the page, and turn heads. And they're not wasting any time lamenting what might have been. "I'm pretty excited," freshman forward Mitch McGary offered. "As a freshman, it's going to be a thrill for me. Same with the other freshmen. For the older guys, it's going to be even better. You never know when it's going to be your last game or Heading into the NCAA Tournament, head coach John Beilein had led U-M to 26 victories — the most wins by a group of Wolverines since the Fab Five posted 31 victories in 1992-93. photo by lon horwedel not. You've got to play with your all. "We're going to be ready for the NCAA Tournament. We're going to bounce back. We have new life. We're going to go at it with all that we've got." McGary has reason to be excited. He participated on a Michigan team that won 26 pre-NCAA Tournament games, marking the most wins by a group of Wolverines since the Fab Five posted 31 victories in 1992-93. He'd seen his team rise to No. 1 in the national rankings. For all the highs and lows of the conference fistfight, he'd come within a couple

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